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Showing posts from May, 2019

Reading Graphically: Graphic Novels at a Glance

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This year, I have embraced graphic novels for the unique and rich experience they are.

I was in grade school when I read Black Beauty for the first time, as a graphic novel. My 9-year-old mind understood that it wasn't quite the novel, but when it came to animals, I was willing to make adjustments. I loved that story, and that horse, and it deeply affected how I see the world.

Somewhere along the way, I confused comics for graphic novels, and they lost their attraction. Born-again Christian Archie comics have their own charm, but they were more vapid than marshmallow-fluff. 

Now, however, I am reclaiming the graphic novel for myself, and I am enjoying our reacquaintance.

It began earlier this year with Illegal, an excruciatingly beautiful and painful story about a youth's journey to join his older brother and sister across desert and ocean. The journey is brutal and treacherous, and the boy takes wild, desperate, unimaginable risks. For months, he lives by his wits, teams up with …

Summer Reading: Are You Ready? Join the Club!

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When Memorial Day comes around, my mind goes to two thoughts: gratitude for those who have given their lives to defend my rights and freedom, and summer reading.

The first book of the summer will combine both: Dogs of War, a graphic novel I discovered at my library.

After that is anybody's guess. Oh, I make a list, check it twice, and read some of the titles — but most summers, I stray from the list because the next new book captivates me, and I lose track of all of the books.


The best part? It's the beginning of the 2019 Summer Reading Club, which lasts from the Friday before Memorial Day to the first day of autumn — so, this year, from May 24 through September 23.

To join the club, just send me a message or comment below, then read as much as you wish. Spend long summer days lounging with a book and a cold drink. I want you to be so immersed in your books that you forget about lunch. The club member who reads the most will receive a book from me. You get a book you like, I get t…

What Can Be Better Than a Library Book Sale?

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I love a good library book sale, and my local library booster club has been known to have a healthy stash of good books. For a while, however, I struggled to find books I didn't already own.

Until Saturday.

That morning, I remembered (quite to my surprise) that this was Book Sale Day Two. And I was rather excited. This surprised me: I am not a Book Sale Day Two shopper. Usually, I visit the library for a late lunch on Book Sale Day One, when I beat the crowd and rub elbows with the seniors and college students — but that Friday, I was lunching with friends and sharing book recommendations.

It's not that I didn't have plenty of new or new-to-me books on my nightstand, poised and ready for their bookmarks (or, as some people call them, "quitter strips"). The previous week, three envelopes and a large box, all filled with books, arrived on my doorstep. Helen Oyeyemi was at Politics & Prose across the river, and I ordered seven of her books; not just her latest,…